Braves Prospects: Braun stays hot, Alvarez/Baldwin have unbelievable debuts and more

The Braves featured some incredible prospect performances over the last week.

Atlanta Braves Photo Day
Atlanta Braves Photo Day / Julio Aguilar/GettyImages

The Braves have been lucky to see a lot of promising performances from their minor league system in 2024. It's safe to say the future is extremely bright for the team as they have plenty of talent in the pipeline. This week's prospect roundup features incredible Triple-A debuts for two of Atlanta's top prospects, impressive pitching performances, and so much more.

Lucas Braun continues strong season for Rome

A sixth-round pick in the 2023 draft, Lucas Braun has quickly made a name for himself within the organization. The 22-year-old put together one of the most dominant appearances of the minor league season on Friday of last week with 7 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, and 12 K.

On the season, Lucas is 4-1 with a 3.81 ERA, 1.220 WHIP, 10 K/9, and 2.4 BB/9 but over his 6 starts, he has taken a step forward featuring a 1.73 ERA, .598 OPS against, 11.1 K/9, and 1.5 BB/9. Braun has a 4 pitch mix: fastball, slider, curveball, and changeup which are all average, but he can throw them all for strikes, a skill most minor leaguers do not have. It will be interesting to see how much longer he will be in Rome.

Drake Baldwin and Nacho Alvarez Jr.'s hot starts at Triple-A Gwinnett

Drake Baldwin and Nacho Alvarez Jr. were promoted from Mississippi to Triple-A Gwinnett as two of the highest-rated Braves positional prospects. Last week, Mississippi saw multiple games postponed due to wet grounds at Trustmark Park making the field unplayable - which may have factored into their promotions because neither player was lighting Mississippi on fire.

Before their promotions, Nacho was hitting .265/.381/.312 while Drake Baldwin was hitting .244/.313/.337. Since being promoted, however, both have started on absolute fire with Nacho hitting .478/.500/.826 in 5 games and Drake hitting .400/.500/.700 in five games.

Isaiah Drake Continues to Surge

Before June, Isaiah Drake was not having a good time - slashing .102/.223/.136 while also battling injury. Since the calendar turned to June, it's been a completely different Isaiah. In the month, Isaiah has hit .255/.321/.511 including a pair of homers, doubles, and triples to go with eight stolen bases. Last week was even better as Isaiah appeared in five games and hit .300/.318/.400 with a pair of doubles.

We are seeing the quality of his at-bats continue to improve, and while he struggles with breaking balls, as do most people his age, he is a lot more confident. We are seeing him sit back and let the ball come to him versus his approach earlier in the season which was super aggressive and swinging at everything. He remains a project, but if he's beginning to turn a corner, it could make for an extremely fun summer for Isaiah.

Jeremy Reyes Makes Full Season Debut

The 18-year-old, who was downright dominant in the FCL with a 1.25 ERA in five games (four starts), paired with a 9.6 K/9 and 5.4 BB/9. Reyes is part of the Venezuela pipeline that the Braves have constructed thanks to star Ronald Acuña Jr., Reyes signed for $250K and looks to be living up to that bonus.

Jeremy made his full-season debut for the Augusta GreenJackets and while it was a little rough around the edges (four walks), the arm looked every bit as good as expected. Reyes has a big fastball, sitting around 94-97 mph, and complimented with a really good slider. His line from his first start was: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 4 BB, and 2 K.

Drue Hackenberg Rebounds After Pair of Rough Starts

Drue Hackenberg, Atlata's second-round pick in 2023, hasn't had the season he envisioned - appearing in 11 games with a 4.13 ERA, 9.5 K/9, and 4.6 BB/9 rate. It's been a bit up and down, with some very good starts and some extremely rough starts. Before his previous start, Drue had given up 10 earned runs while pitching just a total of 6.1 innings. Last week, however, was a return to form for Drue. Against the red-hot Bowling Green Hot Rods, Drue pitched great with a final line of 6.2 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, and 6 K.

Kadon Morton Shows Promise in Start

Converted outfielder Kadon Morton continued his path to transitioning to a pitcher and he had one of his best appearances of the season. In his last start, Kadon went 5 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, and 3 K. Fangraphs recently came out with their Braves Top 30 list and put Kadon in the top 20, with a positive evaluation of his changeup - a pitch he hasn't thrown much, if at all. He has, however, shown unique promise with his slider, and a fastball that sits in the low-to-mid 90s.